This week begins on a relatively light note, with Sakuya quickly thwarting a would-be rapist, targeting a young girl. It’s made clear based on dialogue that the rapist is a Gangler, but after being humiliated, he just runs off, rather than changing and attacking.
When Sakuya returns to GSPO HQ, they are met by Deputy Director Yamagami, who scolds them for the media’s treatment of the Lupinrangers, the police’s low case clearance rate, and more. Commander Hilltop offers to treat the higher ranking official to lunch, and the group makes their way to Jurer. Yamagami is, essentially, the cliche of an angry police captain who dislikes his subordinates, and not much more of his character is shown at this point. Lupinranger vs Patoranger, however, does have an incredible track record for adding depth to characters through subtle touches, set pieces, or dialogue, in a very Dark Souls approach to world building.
Over lunch, the police get a lecture on proper police conduct and attitudes, while the earlier Gangler is revealed and begins a revenge scheme against Sakuya. Sakuya, for his part, is seemingly manipulated into pouring a bowl of soup over Deputy Director Yamagami’s head and attacking his squad mates, as well as Commander Hilltop and everyone else in Jurer. At the end of it all, the Gangler walks away laughing.
The tone becomes decidedly more dramatic as Sakuya is given a two-week suspension, including the cliched, “Turn in your badge and gun,” routine seen in American and British police dramas. At Jurer, Keiichiro tries to make amends for the earlier incident before Good Striker gives the Lupins a warning about a Gangler having been inside the cafe.
We eventually see Sakuya in his home, and learn just from the background decoration that he is musically-inclined, and travels outside of Japan. The detail of his travel, while small, adds layers and history to the character, perhaps coinciding with his military service. Sakuya is a decorated, trained long-distance sniper, after all. The Patorangers are police officers, and would have volunteered for a task force to gain their abilities, so it only makes sense that they would have career history behind them, and I look forward to seeing more of that come into play.
Sakuya puts the puzzle together, only for the Deputy Director to foolishly hold a grudge and ignore the information. Keiichiro and Tsukasa are attacked as a result of the Deputy Director’s willful inaction, and Sakuya defies his suspension order to try to help them. Thankfully, Commander Hilltop is in Sakuya’s corner and comes prepared with VS Changer and Trigger Machine ready.
After a brief battle, the Lupins enter only long enough to retrieve the Gangler’s Lupin Collection item, then depart, leaving Good Striker with the police as a show of good faith. Touma even goes so far as to say, “I’m sure someone’s mad after being framed.”
After the battle, tension builds as we wait to see the fallout of Sakuya’s defiance. Even the music becomes somber as Sakuya prepares to be permanently dismissed from the Patorangers, only to end up being praised highly and even hugged by Deputy Director Yamagami. Now in much higher spirits, Yamagami goofs off a bit, including bringing the running joke of Hilltop’s name to a head, before the episode ends. The preview for the next episode shows, at long last, the debut of Lupin X/Pato X, the double agent ranger.
What did you think of this episode? Leave a comment and let’s discuss!